Why Indie Authors Have to Stick Together

I’ve heard self-publishing “experts” say time and time again that no big difference exists between an author going the traditional route or the indie route.

Ahem — I beg to differ.

Therefore, here are the reasons why us indie authors have to stick together:

1) We have to pay for EVERYTHING.

Editors, designers, copyright filing, advertising, and yes, book tours.

2) And let’s just admit it. Major traditional publishers have one gargantuan advantage over us: connections.

Connections to major media outlets (like the New York Times and Entertainment Weekly), to librarians, to book store owners, to distributors, and to online influencers.

3) No one takes us seriously when we’re starting out.

4) Those dang literary pirates want to steal and sell our stuff!

5) We’re a bunch of anti-establishment rebels.

Of course, we take on this load because we have SO MUCH MORE CONTROL. Over everything.

  • Creativity
  • Legal rights
  • Marketing
  • Design
  • Presentation
  • Pricing

But man, for an indie author trying to make it, you guys know this is an uphill battle! I don’t care what anyone says, going indie is a tougher climb. And this, my friends, is why we all gotta stick together.

While you’re here, did you know I published my debut novel six months ago? “The Apollo Illusion” is a science fiction dystopia about a future society’s frightening overdependence on technology. Learn more by clicking here!

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What it’s Like to Be 2 Millennia Old?

The following is a guest post from a mysterious writer. You must read until the end to discover the secretive recluse …

Everyone has their secrets.

Mine is more complicated than most. Sure, I look like a perky twenty-four-year-old with resting bitchy face, but you’d be wrong. At least about the twenty-four-year-old part.

I’m actually older than Jesus and far more cynical.

So, you might be asking yourself, what’s it like to live for two millennia? Allow me to explain in GIFs. They’re the “in” thing now, right?

1) Like you simply can’t deal with the human race’s stupidity for a second longer.

2)  Like you’re in a crowded room and completely standing still.

3) Like getting close to anyone is just another road trip to heartache.

4) Like times and technology might be changing, but really, that’s about it.

5) Like you’d rather slide down a banister of razor blades into a pool of alcohol—than be forced to make new friends.

6) Like you could totally ace any history test thrown at you.

7) Like whenever you meet someone without ulterior motives, you might just faint.

8) Like in all honesty, the majority of the time, it’s just…

This probably didn’t sell you much on the glorious lifestyle of being older than dirt—but deal with it. In all honesty, it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.

Then again, maybe you’re a sadist. C’mon, I know at least a few of you reading this are. If that’s the case, feel free to linger a bit longer in my world. Check out Oracle by Carissa Andrews—but don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Oracle-XLarge

Wondering who Carissa Andrews is now? Well, you can find her:

The Great Goodreads Confession of 2018 (from a Goodreads Author, Nonetheless)

Follow on Goodreads widget

Let me make a confession: technically, I’ve been a Goodreads member since 2008 or 2009. But I lost my username, password, and old email address. And I couldn’t get back in (can we say “BUMMER?”).

I know, I know.

For someone who wrote a science fiction dystopia about the future repercussions of a society that’s overdependent on technology, you’d think I could get back into my own Goodreads account.

Alas …

So here I am, blogging like a beggar, asking YOU to follow me on my new Goodreads Author page.

Go ahead. Laugh. Get it out of your system.

Now that we’ve cleared that, I do want to clarify that I love reviewing books. And discovering new books. And recommending new books. It’s kinda become my new thing. Seriously. And so much of that will be done on Goodreads.

So besides sounding like a desperate, needy, social media attention whore, I actually do offer some value on Goodreads and genuinely want to know what you’re reading, reviewing, and discussing as well. So what’dya say? Wanna connect on Goodreads?

 

 

 

What It Feels Like to Publish Your First Book

Front cover_final
My debut novel, The Apollo Illusionis releasing this Saturday, May 19, 2018. The Apollo Illusion is a YA dystopian suspense for the hackers, the techies, the seekers, and the rebels of the world.

What does it feel like to publish your first novel? As a professional writer and journalist who’s dreamed of publishing a novel since she was a fetus, let me count the ways …

 

Like skydiving in your underwear. 

Like singing “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift while cruising along the Pacific Coast Highway with your best friend.

Like celebrating the Fourth of July all week long.

Like sticking it to the man (YEAH)!

Like tasting real butter after a lifetime of eating nothing but margarine.

Like the raunchy college party you’ll forget the next day, but wish you wouldn’t.

Like you’re the baddest mother-&*^% who’s ever written a story in the history of human existence.

Did I forget anything? 😉

 

The Toilet Talker

Image

You know you’ve met one. Perhaps you’ve never seen their face. Or known their name. But … you know you’ve met one.

The dreaded toilet talker.

I’ll give you a hint. This species of human being usually reveals its hidden nature within the confines of a public bathroom. Inside a stall. RIGHT NEXT TO YOU … as you’re taking a tinkle … or even worse …

That’s right. The toilet talker knows no shame. The toilet talker understands no boundary. This individual sits there, his or her thighs pressed neatly against cool, white porcelain, and blabs on a cell phone while urine rains into the pool of water waiting so patiently below. The toilet talker’s victims are many, from the unfortunate spouse or friend or parent on the other end of the cell phone, to the sisters quickly and quietly washing their hands in the sink–to YOU–sitting there benevolently in the neighboring stall, listening to a stranger’s thoughts on Russian/American relations in Crimea and wincing each time a spat of flatulence slips between their words.

You feel embarrassed for them, but also for you. Because suddenly you know that their 6-year-old son’s rash might be the chicken pox, and their boss reemed them for not meeting that quarterly deadline.

Probably because you spent too dang long in the bathroom, you think. And suddenly, you come to realize that this person has given a whole new meaning to the term, “TMI.”

Yes, this is the toilet talker. I’m sure you’ve met one. Care to tell?

Death to the Spoon Gnomes!

Is it just me, or do microscopic gnomes sneak into your kitchen at night … and steal all your spoons?

Because each time I clean my dishes, or open my kitchen drawer, I find less and less of this very necessary utensil. Not only does this happen to me, but my boyfriend suffers as well. He quietly revealed to me last week that all his spoons have been disappearing, mysteriously.

I feel like whipping out my old, investigative reporter hat, and following the clues. Because this question is driving me berserk:

What happened to all the spoons?

oh-no

After nights of lost sleep and cortisol-filled panic attacks, I’ve come to one, discernible answer.

It was the gnomes. 

The evil spoon gnomes. And they all must DIE.

How dare they sneak into my house, without my permission, and take my hard-earned silverware while I’m asleep! They fool the cats, they trick the dog.

But worst of all, when the spoon gnomes strike, you can’t sip soup. Or eat cereal.

Or consume ice-cream.

NOOOOOOO!

So, my friends, I implore you. Spoon-lovers of the world unite! And death to the spoon gnomes!

If you’re gonna hack a writer’s email, at least be grammatically correct

So, my email got hacked this week. Yes, my technology shenanigans continue.

But in a way, I must publicly thank the hackers, because they gave me some seriously positive publicity.

Like making everyone in my network aware of just how QUALITY my work is … which is good, because I recently launched my new business, “Shari’s Ink: Copywriting & Creative Services” (I’ll formally announce that soon enough).

You think I’m joking?

Then check this out (LinkedIn):

LinkedIn hacker convo

And this (Facebook)!

Facebook hacker convo

OK, and here’s one more. The actual MESSAGE from the hackers. Note to them: next time, do a little market research on your target audience, first:

Hackers message

Maybe the hackers could hire me for their next “email marketing campaign.” At least then, their messaging will be grammatically correct and on-target.

When the technology gods all plot against you …

… it’s worse than the Zombie Apocalypse. Because with the zombies, at least you can run.

But the technology gods? They will rip every digital limb from your frail, vulnerable body. Like your computer, your phone, your email, your soul. Leaving you desolate and defenseless in the bitter cold.

That’s right. They are EVIL LORDS that deserve to BURN.

computer-frustration

And just when your entire life hangs on a new business venture … 

Your day ends up looking like this:

9:00 a.m: Get out of shower. Begin breakfast.

9:15 a.m: Drag laptop downstairs to work in kitchen.

9:30 a.m: Open Google Chrome. “Cannot access website” message appears. Check internet connection. Nothing. Moan and drag laptop upstairs to router and modem.

9:40 a.m: Troubleshoot router. No luck. Plug modem into computer. Still no luck. Curse Cox Communications.

10:00 a.m: Call Cox Communications.

11:00 a.m: Get off phone with Cox Communications. Internet working. Drag computer downstairs. Eat cold food. Scowl.

12:00 p.m: Make first sales call. Verizon phone stops working, says “out of minutes.” Wonder how that’s possible? Just switched to unlimited plan.

12:10 p.m: Can’t access new Verizon account because PIN number never sent. Call Verizon customer service.

12:30 p.m: Verizon customer service won’t help without PIN.

12:45 p.m: Scream at air. Phone rings randomly … working again? It’s Boyfriend, calling from work. Cry into phone.

1:30 p.m: Write first follow-up email. Press “send.” Doesn’t work. Try again. Doesn’t work.

2:00 p.m: Rip hair out of head and wonder how the hell I.T. people do it!!

By the way, THAT was my day, last Monday.

computer_frustration 02

And it’s what will happen to you, should you ever piss off the technology gods and they all plot against you. So beware, my friends, beware …

If only life were this easy …

Chester on couchI know, right?

I guess this is what I get for spoiling my cats. By the way, meet my gray tabby, Chester.

Maybe I’m finally understanding what my parents felt like during the weekends, working their asses off while I laid in their bed, watching Dirty Dancing every freakin’ day.

But seriously, don’t you wish your life were THIS EASY?

Yea, I thought so.

 

So Apparently, I’m a Hipster? (and so is every other 30-something)

I’m not quite sure when anything with the word “hip” became associated with ME. But apparently, I’ve been labeled a hipster.

Problem is, I’m not really too sure what exactly a “hipster” is.

hipster-evolution
Image borrowed from thepubscout.com (click the image to visit their website)

OK, to clarify here, no one sprung out from behind the bushes, pointed a slimy finger at my nose, and screamed, “HIPSTER!” As if I’d just robbed a bank.

So accusatory!

No, if that had actually happened, you’d have heard the frantic 9-1-1 call gone-viral by now. But according to everyone—apparently—if you’re a 30-something, you’re a hispter.

I kid you not, I’m hearing it everywhere. In articles. On T.V. Even a popular blogger said she’d trade in her Gen-X status to be a “30-year-old hispter.”

WOW. Is my generation really that cool?

Well, then again, we ARE the children of the Baby Boomers. Free love people; you can’t get any more “hip” than that! And these people actually raised us.

But back to trying to understand this whole “hipster” thing.  I asked my Facebook community the other week, “How the heck do you know if you’re officially a hipster?”

And, well … here are some of their answers:

Hipster FB convo

I’m thinking Oscar explained it the best.

WHAT DO YOU THINK? How the heck do you know if you’re a hipster?